PSABC presents an illustrated lecture on western North Carolina’s first highway: the Drovers’ Roads of the early to mid-1800s. Local historian John Turk will cover a lot of territory and a raucous, messy period of regional history during this September program at Pack Memorial Library.
Soon after the western Carolinas were settled, farming pioneers needed a way to transport livestock eastward to more populated markets. Men, called Drovers, would drive herds of livestock down rough roads from Kentucky and Tennessee via Buncombe County to South Carolina and Georgia. For decades during autumn months, multitudes of hogs, cattle, horses, mules, ducks and turkeys made the journey right through downtown Asheville, which concurrently led to the growth and development of the city and region.
John Turk is professor emeritus at Youngstown State University, Vice President of the Western North Carolina Historical Association, and curator of the Asheville History Center’s exhibit on Drovers’ Roads and the Buncombe Turnpike. This exhibit won a Griffin Award from the PSABC.
“At Pack Square today, there’s a bronze pig and turkey on Asheville’s Urban Trail,” says Kieta Osteen-Cochrane, Education Committee Chair. “The real story is of 150,000 hogs traipsing through town every fall … very messy street scene!”
This lecture is scheduled September 26th, 1:30 – 4 pm, at Lord Auditorium in Pack Memorial Library on Haywood Street. Generous sponsors include Terry and Ted Van Duyn. PSABC members and all area residents are invited. A $10 donation is suggested.